Government to pick plans for displaced health law customers

FILE - In this Oct. 6, 2015 file photo, the website, where people can buy health insurance, is displayed on a laptop screen in Washington. A new report is confirming that fewer people than expected are taking advantage of subsidies to purchase health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. The Congressional Budget Office study, based on updated enrollment figures up through last month, says that 11 million people are likely to purchase subsidized policies under the health care law, down about 4 million from estimates issued early last year. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Obama administration is worried that insurers bailing out of the health care law’s markets may prompt their customers to drop out, too.

So administration officials have come up with a strategy to steer affected consumers to plans from remaining insurance companies.

Insurers worry that policyholders could get an unwelcome surprise if their new government-recommended plan isn’t what they’re used to.

The backstop is outlined in an administration document circulating among insurers and state regulators. It also calls for reaching consumers with a constant stream of reminders as the health law’s 2017 sign-up season goes into full swing.

A copy of the strategy was provided to The Associated Press.

The administration says consumers have the last word as far as accepting any “alternate” plan they’re offered.

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